The Summit — Day 14

This morning I sketched storm clouds over our mountains while waiting to pick up my daughter, and this afternoon I tried to express it in paint. The mts got away from me so I tried some palette knife texturing.  It is what it is…LOL

Day 21 West Texas Sky

West Texas sky.  6" x 8" watercolor

West Texas sky. 6″ x 8″ watercolor. Click image to view larger.

Today’s attempt at portraying a beautiful West Texas sky. You can see mountain ranges from a hundred miles away and the sky is huge.

30 paintings in 30 days! Day One of Seas and Skies

Clouds float across sky above a mountain range in grays and browns

Day one of my “Sea and Sky” challenge, 30 paintings in 30 days.  $25.  5.5″ x 10″ watercolor. 

I am again eagerly participating in Leslie Saeta’s 30 Paintings in 30 Days challenge. I did this the last time in January, and I really saw a difference in my painting skills. If you haven’t signed up yet, you can do so at that link.

My theme this month is “Seas and Skies” and this is my first offering. I spend a lot of my time these days watching clouds, figuring out how I would paint them, seeing where the lost edges (or soft edges where the colors blur) and the hard edges (where the division of colors is sharply defined. We were working on clouds in the painting class with Marie Siegrist over the past weeks, and one of her tips is to use a clean toothbrush in a circular motion to soften hard edges (once the paint has dried) to enhance the clouds. I’ve found that very helpful to do!

I created the texture of the mountain by scraping into wet paint with the edge of a chiseled brush handle.  You could also use a palette knife or credit card for similar effect.  The piece is only 5.5″ x 10″  because I did something I swore I wouldn’t do — Use paper left over to just play.  That’s when something turns out that you’re happy with, but is trickier to mat and frame.  Smile.

See other paintings from today’s postings and see the huge variety of work and mediums from artists around the world.

Please stay tuned for tomorrow’s painting.  They won’t all be gallery worthy work, of course, but the key is to paint every day and see your growth.  Hope you come along with me for the journey….

Cloud Shadows and 30 in 30 day challenge announcement

watercolor of clouds and their shadows on mountains. done in a class with Marie Siegrist

watercolor of clouds and their shadows on mountains. done in a class with Marie Siegrist

Classes started up for another session with Marie Siegrist, a signature member of the New Mexico Watercolor Society and teacher in Las Cruces, NM. I’m enjoying taking classes with her weekly, and learning a lot. The very idea of having a class forces one (ME!) to get assignments done.

We started working on clouds the week before and my first two attempts were horrible. seriously. but the night before the next class, I thought...just get in on the paper, Rachel! and it turned out fairly ok. One neat technique she taught us was gently scrubbing out cloud areas (after it has all dried) with a clean toothbrush to get rid of hard edges, if not wanted, and help shape the clouds. So I’m fairly happy with this one, and am looking forward to lots more practice with clouds and water.

Speaking of that, I’m doing the 30 paintings in 30 days challenge starting September 1st. I did this in January, and learned a great deal from the daily practice. Not all paintings have to be (or can be) gallery material, but it’s an exercise to get me into the studio daily. I’ve decided my theme will be “Sea and Sky” so expect to see postings of water, clouds, sky, shells, and more in September.

And of course, the big deal for me is my art show tomorrow evening.  If you’re in town and can stop by, please do so.  I’ll have originals, framed prints and cards for sale.  See the events calendar on the right side column for more information.